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NVIDIA is now providing notebook graphics drivers

Posted on Thursday, December 18 2008 @ 15:50:31 CET by

NVIDIA announced some notebook users will now be able to download the latest graphics drivers directly from nvidia.com, meaning you will no longer need to wait until your notebook manufacturer finally updates its graphics drivers. However, NVIDIA mentions that the drivers won't work with Dell Vostro, Lenovo ThinkPad, Sony VAIO notebooks and models with Hybrid SLI because these laptops use custom drivers.
Users with notebooks equipped with NVIDIA(R) graphics processing units (GPUs) now have the added flexibility of downloading upgradeable graphics drivers directly from NVIDIA.com so they can immediately take advantage of new features, improved application compatibility, and performance optimizations. The first graphics driver release from NVIDIA will extend the NVIDIA CUDA(TM) architecture to notebook GPUs, enabling the growing number of consumers moving to a notebook-only lifestyle to immediately experience the wide range of CUDA-based applications-from heart-stopping GPU-accelerated game physics to GPU-accelerated video conversion.

"Epic and NVIDIA invest an incredible amount of time and energy into ensuring that customers get an amazing experience with our software out-of-the-box," said Mark Rein, vice president of Epic Games. "The only way to ensure that this value-add is realized by customers is for them to have access to timely driver updates. I congratulate NVIDIA for being the first to offer their customers a choice for notebook driver updates."

"NVIDIA is committed to giving the rapidly growing number of customers using notebook GPUs the same performance optimizations and innovative graphics features that desktop customers have grown accustomed to," said Dwight Diercks, vice president of software engineering at NVIDIA. "To accomplish this, we have worked diligently over the past year to modularize our driver architecture and develop a unified driver install package that will not only work with notebooks from all manufacturers but also maintain all of their specific model customizations such as hotkeys and suspend and resume functionality."

GPUs have long been essential platforms for rendering real-time images to computer screens, but software developers and system manufacturers have recently begun using their parallel processing power to deliver a new level of performance for a variety of visual computing applications. The new NVIDIA notebook drivers enable customers to experience the growing number of applications that use the power of NVIDIA GPUs. Video applications such as Badaboom from Elemental Technologies, Power Director 7 from Cyberlink, TMPGEnc from Pegasys Software, and TotalMedia Theater from Arcsoft are all seeing significant performance benefits by transferring the workload from the CPU to the more efficient GPU. Distributing computing applications such as Folding@home, Einstein@home, GPUGRID and SETI@home have also seen performance improve by orders of magnitude through NVIDIA CUDA technology. Recently Adobe Creative Suite 4 became the latest application to speed up performance and enhance features by moving processing to the GPU.

With NVIDIA PhysX(TM) technology, GeForce(R) GPUs bring games to life with explosions full of dust and debris, characters that move with lifelike motion, or cloth that drapes and tears naturally. PhysX technology harnesses the power of NVIDIA GeForce 8 Series or higher GPUs, allowing games to deliver 10-20 times more visual complexity on screen. NVIDIA PhysX technology is the development platform of industry leading publishers such as Electronic Arts (EA) and 2K Games and is the physics engine in the blockbuster title Mirror's Edge from EA.

Starting today, customers with GeForce(R) 8 and 9-series GPUs or Quadro NVS-equipped notebooks can download a BETA version of the drivers from http://www.nvidia.com. Customers will be able to download a WHQL-certified version supporting all GeForce 7, 8, and 9 series and Quadro NVS series notebook GPUs early next year.


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Re: NVIDIA is now providing notebook graphics drivers
by Anonymous on Friday, December 19 2008 @ 13:59:18 CET
THIS is a move in the right direction, and one that AMD has yet to follow. Notebooks are only getting stronger year over year, but the driver support has been mediocre at best with often 6 months between cycles, and often a mere 2 year old GPU couldn't find new drivers at all unless you go to desktop drivers.

Now that both Nvidia and AMD are utiliizing SLI and Crossfire on high end notebooks costing thousands, it is high time that they stepped up and supported those folks properly. But Nvidia did that one better. Now EVERYONE gets driver updates, which moves the industry forward.

Only 2 nagging issues remain:
Fix the durability issues
Make a small, medium, and high end standard power and form factor such that notebook makers and end users are able to upgrade the GPU. If upgradability is finally cleared, Nvidia will find that they sell tons more gpu's than they thought possible, as there are 10's of millions of folks out there who'd be interested in changing over a gpu rather than tossing a notebook into the rubbish heap. And that's a Eco friendly concept too! I'm sure Dell would be along for that ride.

Very good move, and with MS on board with WHQL status, this is a major leap ahead. Now they have to be sure it doesn't go 6 months till a refresh, but this is a great day long awaited.


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